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Re: Which spell checkers to include by default?

On Thu, Dec 27, 2007 at 02:54:34AM +0100, Luca Capello wrote:
> Hi all!
> On Tue, 25 Dec 2007 12:17:52 +0100, Petter Reinholdtsen wrote:
> > [Manoj Srivastava]
> >> Are these packages a drop in replacement for ispell?
> >
> > None of the spell checkers are drop in replacements for the others.
> > Each program need to have support for ispell, aspell, myspell and/or
> > hunspell.  This is why I want us to try to get as many packages as
> > possible to switch to hunspell, to make it possible to drop ispell
> > completely.
> It seems that I cannot find a comparison of the differences spell
> checkers.  Please, could you enlighten me on why hunspell should be a
> better default one?

I do not have much experience with hunspell, so take everything I write
about hunspell with extreme care,

Regarding other spell-checkers, the only advantages ispell currently has
over the others are probably a lower memory use and an easier support for
things like TeX encoding and shorthanded TeX encoding (using 'a instead
of \'a). Disadvantages are many.

Regarding aspell its main advantage (besides the suggestion algorithms
and soundslike support) is the supports for filters, which should make
easier spell-checking of special text files (in etch where I write now:
context, email, sgml, texinfo, debctrl, nroff and tex).

hunspell advantages are mostly:
  * On the fly creation of hash tables from plain text dict files while
    aspell uses a pre-built binary file for loading efficiency. This is
    not a big problem for Debian users, since most aspell dicts build the
    binary hash tables from postinst and the dict itself is arch all. This
    can however be an hunspell efficiency disadvantage for (hunspell still
    unsupported here) emacs ispell.el, when you are switching between
    different buffers in different languages and require full rebuilding
    each time.
  * Handling of composed synthetic and agglutinative languages. One side
    note here, Kevin Atkinson (aspell upstream) recently reported in
    aspell-user list that some of the hunspell code was merged into aspell
    CVS. Not sure if all hunspell functionalities will be available, but
    at least some of hunspell features will be present in next aspell
  * Portability? Not sure if this is still an issue, but older myspell
    seemed to be a bit more portable than aspell at that time.

... Write your additions ...

So, I am not sure about which spellchecker should be the default one, aspell
or hunspell, just I would have liked all the new code being written against
the same program.


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